If you ever wondered how Scripture is tweeted, retweeted, and Facebooked, you don’t need to wonder anymore.
Stephen Smith has built a semi-useful (but still wonderful) tool that tracks biblical references on Facebook and Twitter. Smith has been collecting data since 2009. During his presentation “Tweeting the Bible” at BibleTech 2010, an annual conference that Logos Bible Software hosts every year, Smith describes the background for this project, as well as some of its possible uses. In his lecture, he highlighted some interesting data about how much of the Bible could be reproduced if all we had to look at was 10 months of Twitter updates. Using the NIV we could reproduce about 27% of the Bible from a 10 month stretch of Twitter posts. The most popular parts of the Bible during this time were the Gospels and Galatians-Colossians. On the other hand, it is also interesting that the least tweeted part of the Bible was 2 Chronicles.
So the next time you happen to be curious about the top 30 Popular Verses that are trending right now you can find out easily using Smith’s real-time search tool at openbible.info/realtime! It might just be plain fun, but I can imagine that it might come in handy for research. For example, perhaps you may notice a particular reference is being linked to a particular current event, using this tool you could quickly check how a specific reference is being used in the social media universe. For example, one of the funny illustrations in Smith’s presentation was related to the release of the Twilight movie New Moon and Isaiah 1:14:
- Applying Sentiment Analysis to the Bible (This visualization explores the ups and downs of the Bible narrative, using sentiment analysis to quantify when positive and negative events are happening. That sounds pretty boring but this illustration is from Smith’s blog and it is really neat!)
- Big Data Part 2: The Guru’s of Big Data